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South Korea Urged to Revamp How It Trains AI Specialists

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Korea should adopt a more systematic approach to educating artificial intelligence specialists, as the country lags far behind global peers in the number of AI experts and related educational infrastructure, local experts say.

Data from Element AI shows that Korea ranks 22nd as a nation with 2,551 AI specialists, or 0.5 percent of the global total. The U.S. topped the list with 39.4 percent. Korea also trails other Asian countries, such as India and China, which rank second and fourth, respectively. The U.K. and France are second and fourth respectively.

"We advise the government to establish a control tower dedicated to fostering AI talent," Park Dong, a senior researcher at the Korea Research Institute for Vocational Education and Training, says in a research report. Critics say there is no consistent policy overseeing AI education in South Korea, with multiple government ministries pursuing their own objectives without any uniformity.

"The problem is the outflow of quality AI researchers here," says Kim Kyung-joong, a professor of computer science and engineering at Sejong University. "Industry-leading IT players overseas pay a lot more money to AI experts than their Korean counterparts, so the reality is that most top-class AI experts prefer to work abroad."

From The Korea Times
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